WASHINGTON Jan 28 Specialty pharmaceutical
company Allergan Inc won a round in a patent fight
against two generic drug makers on Monday when an appeals court
found a key portion of the patent for its glaucoma drug,
Lumigan, was valid.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit also ruled
that Sandoz, the generic unit of Novartis AG, and Teva
would infringe that patent if they went through with
plans to sell a generic version of Lumigan.
The appeals court upheld a decision from the U.S. Court of
Appeals for the District of Delaware.
Allergan is best-known for its anti-wrinkle treatment,
Botox, but has one of the industry's biggest arrays of
prescription eye medicines. Lumigan, which treats glaucoma, has
annual sales of more than $600 million.
Lumigan and Allergan's Latisse, which is made of the same
chemicals, cause eyelashes to grow thicker and darker.
Allergan and Teva could not immediately be reached for
comment while a spokesman for Novartis declined comment.
The case is at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal
Circuit. It is Allergan, Inc v. Barr Laboratories, Teva
Pharmaceuticals and Sandoz, Inc. The case number is 2012-1040,